Make a Budget & Find Funding Opportunities
On this page:
- Make a budget
- Consider funding options
- Submit a strong application
- Keep track of your finances
- Grants & funding opportunities
Determine the costs of the program. It is important to understand and identify your start-up costs as well as ongoing expenses and asset replacement costs. Estimate how much funding is required based on your delivery model and how many students you plan to serve.
District administrators, trustees, or parents may be more supportive if you can demonstrate how your food program will benefit families and reduce the financial burden of managing impacts of student hunger (e.g., behavior management, educational support, etc.).
Please note: Provincial Food Program funding was announced April 4th. District allocations are available here.
District Funding: Many school districts in B.C. use their CommunityLINK funding to support school food programs.
Grants: Apply for government or community grants. Consider researching other funding or partnership opportunities in your area. Here is a list of grants and other funding opportunities to get you started. Look for funding opportunities that support children, food security, and/or education.
Low Cost and Recovery Ideas:
- Parent Advisory Committee funding
- A pay-what-you-can model with parents (e.g., Fuel Up! Subsidy)
- Grow fruits or vegetables in a school garden
- Include traditional and place-based foods in the menu
Partnerships and Community Connections: Community inclusion is essential to successful programs - leverage existing partnerships and opportunities to enhance your program
- Partner with the community to support school food programs and offer fun and unique fundraising events
- See if there is a non-profit organization in your area that you can work with to streamline processes or support efficiencies in areas such as food aggregation and assist with growing your or building a program
Most funding opportunities have an application process with different requirements. The description and eligibility requirements will explain what (or whom) the funding is for. Note the application deadline and create a list of submission documents. Have your monthly or quarterly financial statements ready if applicable.
Tailor your application. Get an idea of the spirit or principle behind the funding by reviewing a list of previous grant recipients. See how you can align your application with a similar organization or cause. You might consider hiring a grant writer to help with this.
Keep applying. Sometimes the funding is not reoccurring, which may mean that you will need to reapply periodically. If you're not successful the first time, take note of how you can improve and try again during the next application intake.
Monthly or quarterly financial reports are essential for fundraising and grant applications. Recording your finances properly and making sure they are up to date will help you to plan and run the program efficiently. Inquire if there are accounting services available through the school district or reach out to the volunteer community in your area.
This is not a full list of all funding sources. Check the funding website or contact an organization directly for detailed information.
Funding for schools to provide breakfast at least three times a week to all students. Generally, the average cost of breakfast ($1 per breakfast) is used to calculate funding.
Ask for help: Ryan Baker is the Programs Lead for Breakfast Club of Canada. Contact him to get help with your application or to get advice on how to build partnerships with other organizations that can help.
Funding for registered charities and non-profit organizations in western Canada for recreation, environmental conservation or urban agriculture projects that can be publicly accessed.
Grants for schools, communities and charitable organizations that want to start a project to help the environment. For example, school and community gardens or environmental education programs.
BC Dairy Association Mini Food Grant
Schools can also access tools and information to help set-up a school milk program.
Grants for schools with a CRA charitable number and a project or program that:
- Provides education to students in trades, science, technology, engineering or math
- Promotes energy efficiency, reduces carbon emissions and minimizes environmental impacts
Funding from the provincial government designed to support not-for-profit organizations with the delivery of accessible and inclusive programs and services. There is also funding for Parent Advisory Councils (PAC) and capital projects.
Grants for schools to promote food literacy and deliver healthy local food in classrooms. The goal is to increase access to healthy local foods in schools and to help students connect with their local food environment and producers.
Support for non-profit organizations offering programs, events or projects that promote healthy, active living with a focus on encouraging physical activity and outdoor living. For sponsorship, present an outline of your project or event to a manager at a local Canadian Tire, SportChek or Mark’s store.
A free breakfast program and food backpacks for students in the Central Okanagan region. The Boys and Girls Club of Kelowna also provides backpacks for students with food for the weekend. There is no application process.
Grants for community non-profit organizations and Indigenous Nations to develop or establish a new program related to health and wellness or population health, including healthy eating, social/family connectedness, and healthy early childhood development.
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